GippsAero, maker of the Airvan 8 utility aircraft, is returning to its Australian roots after founder and former CEO George Morgan bought out the shares owned by India’s biggest company. Since 2010 Mahindra Aerospace has been the majority shareholder in the company, which certified and began manufacturing the Airvan 8 in the mid-2000s. The partnership didn’t work out as planned, and in 2020 Mahindra ceased production. Morgan told Australian Flying he’s anxious to take the original Latrobe Valley factory out of mothballs and start filling an order backlog.

“GippsAero as of 1 December is now 100% owned by its original founders/owners,” Morgan told Australian Flying. “This was accomplished with the eventual aim to recommence Airvan production on a market-driven basis. Major Airvan refurbishments/rebuilds will be recommenced immediately along with factory maintenance.” Mahindra’s $100 million investment was intended to fund certification and production of larger turboprop version of the aircraft dubbed the Airvan 10, but that project was shelved after the production prototype crashed in 2018. About 230 of the rugged and spacious piston powered Airvan 8s were sold before production ceased.

Russ Niles
Russ Niles is Editor-in-Chief of AVweb. He has been a pilot for 30 years and joined AVweb 22 years ago. He and his wife Marni live in southern British Columbia where they also operate a small winery.


  1. YES! We miss Paul–PLEASE keep us up to date with an occasional article or video!

    Is he still skydiving? Perhaps an updated pilot report on the turbine AirVan mentioned–with a photo of him jumping out of it! (laugh)

  2. I wonder if PB’s sudden “retirement” didn’t have something to do with ” Flying” Group INC buying over AvWeb. ….

    Now my inbox is filled with spam to purchase a subscription to “Flying” magazine…

    …………… Good to see GippsAero going back to its roots. Flew their Skyvan back in the 2005 era.

    • Paul was actually going to retire after this year’s AirVenture but we persuaded him to stay on through the transition to Flying Media Group, which he supported.